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Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)


We are kicking off Nerdipop’s Halloween countdown with none other than the movie that started the first appearance of the man of your dreams, Freddy Krueger in Nightmare on Elm Street.


Growing up in South Africa in the 80’s and 90’s, it was very hard to avoid the posters of classic horror movies which always gave me chills and frights as I walked past them in the VHS rental houses. This sadly disappeared due to the rise of technology. I remember walking past the posters of classics such as Friday the 13th and the memorable Jason goes to Hell posters, but there was always one that made me wonder what the movie was about.  I was even hesitant to lift up the VHS cassette and to look at the back of the box – that movie was Nightmare on Elm Street.

When I was growing up I actually didn’t watch the movies – so I don’t have the nostalgia of watching the movies secretly with friends hiding behind the couch and struggling to sleep in fear of Freddy coming for me. The first time I watched Nightmare on Elm Street I was about 30, so I have a different view on the franchise and the series than say someone who watched it growing up.

The story of Nightmare on Elm Street tells the tale of Nancy Thompson, played by Heather Langenkamp, who along with her friends are being tormented by a murderer wearing a red jumper and a fedora for a hat, and as always, that killer right arm of his. Not many people know this but Johnny Depp actually stars in this movie and made a cameo for the ‘last’ entry in the series Freddy’s Dead: The Nightmare on Elm Street Part 6. His death in the movie is actually one of the most memorable. On the Never Sleep Again documentary they tell the story of the Nightmare on Elm Street series and tell how the effects were done – which is quite cool (they built an upside down set of the room and pumped a giant hose filled with fake blood through the bed to get the effect where Johnny Depp’s character is killed).

The movie hasn’t aged particularly well – especially if you’re a fan of how modern day horror films are made – but still it’s a must see for any self professed horror fan. So in the word of the little girls singing in the movie:

1, 2 Freddy’s coming for you..


Did you know?

Freddy Krueger has under 7 minutes of screen time.

Nightmare on Elm Street was Johnny Depp’s first film

Over 500 gallons of fake blood were used during the making of the film.

The idea behind the glove was a practical one on Wes Craven’s part, as he wanted to give the character a unique weapon, but also something that could be made cheaply and wouldn’t be difficult to use or transport

The film cost roughly $1.8 million to produce, a figure it made back in its opening weekend.

The scene were Freddy’s arms elongate were achieved by having men with fishing poles on each side of the alley marionetting a set of puppet arms attached to actor Robert Englund.


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